This film is part of Free
Out of the Rubble
Visionary filmmaker Penny Woolcock explores half a century of British urban life using films digitised for Britain on Film, the archive project from BFI and its partner archives.
Short documentary 2015 18 mins
Out of the Rubble is leading filmmaker Penny Woolcock’s creative response to Britain on Film, the archive project from the BFI in collaboration with regional partners from around the UK. Drawing on archive film digitised under the scheme, much of it unseen for decades, Woolcock explores the history of housing and British urban life over the last half a century, crafting a singular and revelatory short film.
Watch the original films used by Woolcock in our collection - Britain on Film: Out of the Rubble - or explore thousands more films in our Britain on Film map.
Britain on Film: Out of the Rubble
Non-Fiction 1965 7 mins Location: Ladywood
The tattered wallpaper of part demolished housing contrasts with gleaming new tower blocks. Ladywood in Birmingham may be on the up but what about the forgotten people?
New Towns for Old
Documentary 1942 6 mins Location: Sheffield
Sheffield stands in as 'Smokedale', an industrial Everytown, in this stirring call for "new schools, new hospitals, new roads, new life", after WWII.
A City Reborn
Documentary 1945 22 mins Location: Coventry
Coventry prepares to rise from the ashes of WWII in this docu-drama written by Dylan Thomas.
Rotherham up to Date
Promotional 1961 39 mins Location: Rotherham
An absorbing picture of council services at the beginning of the 1960s, with babies getting polio jabs and girls having braces fitted, while Roots is playing at the Civic Theatre.
Bull Ring Shopping Centre
Documentary 1965 25 mins Silent Location: Birmingham
A bright and breezy promotional tour of Brum's original mega-mall.
Housing Makes History
Campaigning film 1953 18 mins Location: Barnet
Residents of Barnet and Stockton-on-Tees are the lucky beneficiaries of a government scheme to remedy Britain’s housing problem.
Brickmaking at Pycroft Brickworks
Amateur film 1974 11 mins Location: Hayling Island
You'll be up to your knees in clay when you meet the Pyecrofts in this delightful film about a family brick making business on Hayling Island -
Netley Marsh Steam Engine Rally 1976
Amateur film 1976 4 mins Silent Location: Netley Marsh
The hot summer of '76 is made even hotter by a line-up of working steam traction engines in this nostalgic film from R H Collins
Amateur film 1952 15 mins Silent Location: Eastbourne
Journey back to the 50s where the boys of Eastbourne College enjoy a jolly good time square bashing, parading, playing rugby and athletics, rowing on the River Ouse and touring.
Hove, Horsham and Horses
Amateur film 1966 7 mins Silent Location: Hove
Catch a glimpse of Hove's old town hall before the bull-dozers move in as well as leafy Horsham scenes and a local hunt at Patcham in this film from Doreen Combes
Ploughing at Fulking and views of Shipley Mill
Amateur film 1969 4 mins Silent Location: Fulking
Frank Gregory captures rural West Sussex in this charming film from 1969 - featuring Shire horses at a ploughing match and excellent views of a spinning Shipley Mill
A Family Holiday in Southend
Amateur film 1967 4 mins Silent Location: Southend Pier
Join this happy family on a jolly to Southend - visiting the mile long pier, the replica Golden Hind, a jellied eel stall and lured by posters promising medieval torture